Living your life based on the advice and intentions of others could very likely lead you down a path that may seem quite safe but that will end up killing you in the end. You could be working in a passionless job, married to that person that “looked good on paper” and investing in material things that you neither want nor need. It could happen without you even realizing that it is occurring and once you do finally arrive at that conclusion, you’ll end up starting from scratch.
Much of the time, this advice is often given with the greatest degree of care and love with a primary interest in leading you into what the advisor believes is best for you. However, you are the only authority on what is most beneficial even if it’s not on a conscious level. Eternally living up to the expectations of others will leave you feeling resentful and exhausted and at the same time, often empty. Oh sure, you may appear to have it all but only from the standpoint of the external perception and not necessarily from an internal passion.
It pays to take the necessary time to determine for yourself what you stand for and what motivates and drives you to commit yourself to any given situation. We all have the ability to use discipline to get you through a mundane work day or a difficult relationship. We can all find the necessary credit to wear the best labels and live in the high profile neighbourhoods that make you appear to have achieved happiness and success. But is that really how you define your success? Are these really the things that make you happy?
It is most certainly rather terrifying to approach life in this way – to create a vision for yourself and to then follow through on it. Listening to your intuition about what makes you happy may seem ridiculous to many people – your friends, your parents – all people that care very deeply for you. They may not be able to share your vision and they may find that any obstacles that you face actually confirm that you should give up your dreams but don’t be swayed. Because they will try. They will say things that imply you should simply settle on a job or a lover or any circumstance that seems very safe to them.
This can be the most frightening aspect of living up to your potential. You will second guess yourself because you are being told you are wrong and the challenges may tempt you to believe that. Go back to that intuitive place where you know what makes you happy, and don’t give up even in the face of obstacles and lack of support for your dreams. Seek out the people that applaud you and spend more time with them if you need external validation. Remember that the people that are frequently advising against your relentless pursuit are not generally any smarter than you are and in fact, they are only less brave.
More often than not, it is the people that don’t think like the majority that are the happiest and may even end up having a great impact on change in the world. Changing the world, however, does not have to be your goal in truly living up to your potential. The only requirement is that you listen to your own instinct and follow it blindly into all of the pursuits that make you the happiest. You only have to change your world.